Chris Schwarz's Blog

Things to Buy: Gramercy Split-nut Driver

I have a “saw problem.” There, I said it.

And because I have too many saws in my shop at home and at work, I also have too many saws that have loose saw nuts. They loosen up with use and with seasonal contraction and expansion. Many of my late-model saws can be tightened up with a regular straight screwdriver. But early saws have what are called “split nuts,” where the nut has two slots instead of one.

The bad news is that these nuts come in different sizes. So the solution is usually to take several old screwdrivers and grind them into the profiles you need. I have a drawer of these modified drivers.

The good news is that Gramercy Tools has a new split-nut driver that takes up very little space because it chucks into any standard Ã?¼” driver (shown but not included), such as a 4-in-1 screwdriver. This split-nut driver fits the Gramercy dovetail saw (naturally), but it also fits my Lie-Nielsen saws with split nuts and a good chunk of my vintage saws, such as my beloved Garlick & Sons sash saw.

It doesn’t fit my Wenzloff & Sons saws, however, so I’m going to have to keep some of the custom drivers in my drawer.

If you are wondering if this driver will work for your saws, here are the specs: the head of the driver is .435″ wide. Each of the two tips is .118″ wide and .042″ thick.

The driver works brilliantly and is something I’ve never seen before in catalogs or at the flea markets. At $8.95, it is an excellent little accessory that I highly recommend and is available from Tools for Working Wood.

– Christopher Schwarz